All my Dragonvale posts are being Indexed HERE for easy access.
The following post is based entirely on my testing and observations in the game of Dragonvale, and information regarding testing given to me by other players. If you are familiar with the game, and don’t want to revisit history, CLICK HERE for the Winter 2020 Event Dragons.
I have played the App game Dragonvale since shortly after it came out in 2011. It is a breeding simulator, whereby you choose 2 dragon as parents, and you end up with an offspring based on the elements available from the parents. The game was launched with 23 dragons, and there are now over 600. One of the main aspects of the game is that limited dragons become available during certain times of the year. Not surprisingly, we are in a Winter/Christmas event at the moment, and players are now trying to get the new dragons.
Breeding a Regular Dragon
Calculating breeding chances was much simpler in the early years of the game. The possible regular dragons that might result were given an equal chance of being bred, based on the combinations that were available. Flower (Fire+Plant) + Tree (Plant+Earth) could result in 5 dragons, each with a 1 in 5 chance of occurring.
- Poison (Plant/Fire) 20%
- Flower (Fire/Plant) 20%
- Lava (Fire/Earth) 20%
- Moss (Earth/Plant) 20%
- Tree (Plant/Earth) 20%
Breeding an Epic Dragon
But there are rarer dragons in the game, that needed to have their percentages set. A Rainbow dragon can be bred whenever 4 different elements are in the breeding combination. But it’s a high earning dragon, so you don’t want it to occur at a common frequency. In fact it has a set breeding chance of 1%. So when you added the cold element into the mix, say by breeding Flower (Fire+Plant) with Mountain (Cold+Earth), you now had a 1% chance of breeding a Rainbow dragon, and the 6 regular dragons split the remaining 99% among them, giving them each 16.5%.
- Rainbow (Epic) 1%
- Poison (Plant/Fire) 16.5%
- Flower (Fire/Plant) 16.5%
- Lava (Fire/Earth) 16.5%
- Moss (Earth/Plant) 16.5%
- Tree (Plant/Earth) 16.5%
- Mountain (Cold/Earth) 16.5%
Breeding Multiple Rare Dragons
When there is more than 1 dragon with a set % possible, it appears you add those percentages together, and the regular dragons cut up the remaining pie to share amongst themselves. Bone dragon was the first limited to be added during Halloween in 2011, and it was added with a set chance of 5%. It could be bred with any combination that included fire and earth, so the Flower + Mountain pairing would now give you …
- Rainbow (Epic) 1%
- Bone (Fire/Earth) 5%
- Poison (Plant/Fire) 15.66%
- Flower (Fire/Plant) 15.66%
- Lava (Fire/Earth) 15.66%
- Moss (Earth/Plant) 15.66%
- Tree (Plant/Earth) 15.66%
- Mountain (Cold/Earth) 15.66%
The breeding in Dragonvale occurs in real time, and each dragon has a set time. A Poison dragon is bred in 30 minutes. A Rainbow dragon is bred in 48 hours. None of this affects the breeding %, but if you are trying to breed a Rainbow dragon, knowing that 99% of the time you are going to breed something else, you would like those “something elses” to be bred and out of the way as quick as possible, so you can try again.
So I have started to put together a spreadsheet, with the equivalent formulas to calculate these things.
The top 2 rows are the parents. Then there are the rows of possible outcomes in from the parents; 8 from this pairing, when Bone was first introduced. Rainbow and Bone are the 2 rare dragons with a set % (red highlight).
The columns show the breed time (in hours), the set %, and then a 0 or a 1, to indicate if the are a regular dragon with no set %, or a rarer type that does. This is just needed for the math on the bottom 2 lines that show how many regular hybrids there are (6 in this case), and how many dragons with a set breeding chance (2).
The second to last column has the breeding percentage. This the set number, for those dragons that have one. Fore those that don’t, you can see the math in the cells highlighted in orange. There is 94% remaining, divided by 6 regular hybrids, so that they each have 15.67% chance. The 100% at the bottom of that row is a sum check, to make sure that the % does indeed add up to 100%.
The last column is the average fail time of each dragon. If I have a 15.67% chance of breeding a Poison dragon with a half an hour breed time, then that would add up to 0.08 hours chance of a Poison dragon, or 4.8 minutes. Adding up the fail times of the dragons gives us an average, which is 8.57 hours on each attempt to get out Rainbow dragon, using Poison + Mountain.
Replacing the Cold Element with Lightning
If we swap out the Mountain dragon (Cold+Earth) for a Quake dragon (Earth+Lightning) there are different dragons possible. You can no longer get a Mountain dragon, but you can get Firefly, Quake and Crystal.
There are now 10 dragons possible, so you have 8 regular hybrids sharing the remaining %. This drops it to 11.75% chance each. And our average fail time goes up to 8.78 hours. This is not because there are more dragons, but because we have introduced the Crystal dragon which has a 24 hour breed time.
Long story short, you want to breed with the shortest possible average breed time, to make it quicker to try again, which gives you more chances of getting the dragon you want.
9 Years On …
There are now over 600 dragons in the game. There are only 10 regular elements, and only 100 of the dragons are regular dragons. The remaining 500 have a set % chance to breed them. This can cause math problems, which you’ll see in the last event dragon below.
Social Cloning Dragons
The breeding rules have changed multiple times over the last 9 years. But one of the big introductions was the Cooperative Breeding Cave (CBC). This gave you a chance of breeding a dragon you didn’t have, even when the normal breeding chance of the dragon was 0. For example, trying for a limited event dragon after the event was over. This allows new players to try for dragons that were previously unavailable to them, and is acknowledged to be a good thing.
A result of this change is that each event now introduces dragons that can’t be bred normally. They are introduced with a 0% chance of breeding them normally. They are available to buy during the event, and people who do so often make them available in their CBC to give other players a chance to get them. These dragons now have a “Cloning %”. There are actually several different cloning %, due to the nature of the game, but the important one we want to look at is the “Social Parent Cloning %”. This is the chance of getting the dragon, in the CBC, when you breed one of your dragons with it.
The only other thing to remember, is that the dragon you use in the CBC also has a Social Parent Cloning %, and so you will breed extras of it as well. To keep the average fail time as low as possible, you should use one of your dragons with the smallest breed time as possible. This should become clear in the real world examples below.
Tundral Rumble – Longcicle Dragon
The Longcicle dragon has the largest social parent cloning chance of the new event dragons at 5%. It also has only 3 elements (Cold, Water, Air) and so no chance of breeding a Rainbow or Double Rainbow. The shortest fail time of a dragon with those 3 elements is 8 hours, so using any of those will give the same results. I have chosen Fog.
The entries for each parent reflect their social parent cloning percentage. Fogs 10% Social Parent Clone chance adds to its regular hybrid chance, for a total of 18.36%. You will breed one of these every 5 or 6 times on average. I think I have added in all the other limiteds that are currently available, which with these 3 elements is just Flurry and Icebound.
14 possible breeds, 7 regular and 7 rare/epic/limited. 41.5% for the rare dragons, and 58.5% spread over the other 7.
With Longcicle having a 5% chance, 14 attempts will give you a 50/50 chance of breeding it. Multiplying the average fail time, by 14 attempts, gives you 5.68 days. You will have a decent chance of cloning a Longcicle dragon in the next week.
The Lyuba dragon has the 4 elements earth, cold, water and air. The dragon with the shortest breed time using those 4 elements is Sandstorm, at only 2 hours, so you should use that to clone.
28 possible dragon outcomes. 17 rare/epic/limited taking up 70% of the breeding outcomes, leaving the 11 regulars to share the other 30% between, for slightly less than3%.
A lot of long breed times brings the average fail time to 13.62 hours, and with only 1.5% chance to clone, you need 46 attempts for a 50/50 chance of getting it, or just over 26 days of non stop breeding.
The Neyvee dragon also has a 1.5% for cloning, but has the elements plant, fire, earth, cold and water. The plant element makes a lot of shorter breed dragons, with the shortest being Poison at 30 minutes. You should definitely use it for cloning. But with so many elements in the mix, there are a lot of dragons possible.
There are so many rare, epic and limited dragons possible, that this combination has given us 129.25%. This is an obviously impossible outcome, and it has 2 effects. Firstly, all the regular hybrids have a net chance of 0. (Save for our 30 minute Poison, which we will still clone 7.74% of the time.) Secondly, all the set % are reduced, until the total chance of all the dragons is 100%. (I believe this happens equally across all the dragons with a set percentage. There is no way for me to know for sure. And really, when the % of any dragon is this small, it doesn’t really make that much of a difference.)
The important result for us, is that the chance of Neyvee drops to 1.16%. This means 60 attempts are required to give you a 50/50 chance of getting one. Our average fail time is 12.2 hours. This is still less than Lyuba, even though we have an extra 20 dragons we can breed. This is because so many of them have a short breed time. But 60 attempts at an average of 12.2 hours means 30.5 days of breeding is required to give you a 50/50 shot at getting the Neyvee dragon.
Limited Event Dragons
During the event, a series of limited dragons is released, each for a week at a time. I will be making a chart for each of these, and releasing them in a new post. Particularly as they will be available for breeding simultaneously, so I’ll be able to compare and contrast the different methods of trying to attain them.
I hope you found this useful. Please let me know if you have any questions.